Confident Choices for Senior Living

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					            Confident Choices for Senior Living                                          Formatted: Font: Not Italic


          Application Renewal Instruction Packet
Thank you for your interest in renewing your Confident Choices for Senior Living
designation.

Aging Services of Minnesota’s Confident Choices for Senior Living program is
designed to:
    improve quality in Housing-with-Services settings, including those with
      assisted living programs
    increase public trust and consumer confidence, and
    inform consumer decision-making.

We believe that Confident Choices can help consumers identify the housing
providers that best meets their needs. In addition, Confident Choices will help you
celebrate and market what you do. Over time, this review process and the
information gathered may also positively affect public perception and advocacy
efforts.

This instruction packet is intended to explain the process of Confident Choices and to
provide details for each section so that you may more easily and effectively complete
your application.

Process
Confident Choices designees will receive a reminder notice before their two-year
designation period will conclude. Confident Choices designees may submit their
Renewal application, along with a non-refundable fee, to Aging Services of
Minnesota.

Please email Mary Youle at myoule@agingservicesmn.org to notify her that your
renewal application has been mailed. You will receive an email confirming that your
application has been received and indicating whether it is complete or whether
additional information is needed.

Don’t forget that your Code of Ethics and Guiding Principles for Dementia Care (if
applicable) must have been renewed within the previous two years. You can choose
to renew your Code of Ethics and Guiding Principles at the same time that you
submit your Confident Choices application if it would be helpful to your organization
to synchronize these renewals.

Please note that given the busy schedules of our volunteer reviewers, it may take
some time to schedule a site visit to your building. If a large number of applications
are received during a given time period, Aging Services reserves the right to hold
some applications for review until the following quarter.


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After Aging Services has determined that your application is complete, we will contact
our volunteer District Coordinator, who will identify two volunteers to conduct your
site review. Once the reviewers have been identified, you will be asked whether you
perceive them to have any conflicts of interest, and they will be asked to sign a
statement indicating they have no conflict of interest. Each reviewer has also signed
a confidentiality statement. One of the reviewers will contact you to schedule the visit
to your building.

The site visit typically takes about one to two hours, though the visit may take longer
if you have several buildings on your campus all applying for the Confident Choices
designation at the same time. Once the reviewers leave your building, they will
complete their review sheets and return them to Aging Services. Aging Services staff
will then contact you regarding whether your renewal application was successful.

If your Confident Choices designation is renewed, Aging Services of Minnesota will
send out a packet including marketing materials, and ideas on how to use the
Confident Choices seal and promote your accomplishments. Should your renewal
application not be successful you will be told the reasons and the next steps to follow
if you choose to re-apply.


Important Instructions for Completing the Renewal Application:

Applicants seeking to renew their Confident Choices designation, must continue to
meet all of the Confident Choices requirements
    In order to be considered for Confident Choices, you must be registered as a
      Housing-with-Services provider.
    You must have adopted Aging Services’ Code of Ethics (or appropriate
      alternative) within the past two years.
    Your on-site housing manager must have at least one year of experience in
      the field of senior housing. For renewing designees only, if the housing
      manager has less than one year of experience, the manager is asked to
      provide additional information (described below).
    You must have administered a resident (or family/responsible party)
      satisfaction survey within the last year.
    You must have a current resident handbook.
    If you market your building as providing dementia care services, you must be
       following recognized Dementia/Memory Care standards, such as Aging
       Services’ Guiding Principles for Dementia Care or the Alzheimer’s Association
       guidelines. Aging Services’ Guiding Principles must be re-adopted every two
       years.
    You must meet at least five of the fourteen elective requirements.
    You must sign the statement of regulatory compliance.




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Demographic Section

Please provide us with the basic information noted on the application. If you have
multiple buildings on your campus or within your operation, each building registered
as a housing-with-services establishment must submit its own application for the
Confident Choices designation. If you have chosen to register several of your
buildings under one Housing-with-Services registration, then you only need to
complete one Confident Choices application. Please call Mary Youle at 651-645-
4545 if you have questions about this requirement.

Important Tips for Completing Your Application
    Be clear when describing how you meet the core and elective requirements.
      You can attach additional paper if your answers need more space, but please
      do not send in supporting documents unless the application form specifically
      requests them. Supporting documents can be reviewed on-site if necessary.
    Some of your programs or systems may fit more than one application
      requirement. Please note that you cannot use the same example to meet two
      different requirements.
    We encourage you to fill out the application with your management team to be
      sure that your application reflects all the good programs you offer.
    Although applicants are required to address only five elective requirements,
      we encourage you to address additional electives as “insurance” of a
      successful application.


CORE REQUIREMENTS
The application has two parts, core requirements and elective requirements. In order
for your application to be considered, you must meet each of the core requirements
and at least five of the elective requirements.

Code of Ethics
In order to meet this requirement, your Code of Ethics (or appropriate alternative)
must be current. The Aging Services of Minnesota Code of Ethics designation is only
good for two years, so check to see if your Code is current by consulting your
paperwork, reviewing the Aging Services web site, or contact Alecia Crumpler at 651-
645-4545. If your Code of Ethics has lapsed, please obtain a new resolution adopting
the Code of Ethics and submit it along with your Confident Choices renewal
application. Information to assist you in renewing your Code of Ethics is found at
www.agingservicesmn.org under “Quality Initiatives.”

On your application or in an attachment, please explain how your organization
communicates the Code of Ethics and your organization’s commitment to it to your
residents and staff.

If you are not an Aging Services of Minnesota member or have not completed the
Code of Ethics process, and have an alternative process, feel free to describe that

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process. In order for an alternative process to be considered, it must contain
evidence of:
    Integrity and fairness, honesty and confidentiality;
    Open communication;
    Encouraging choice through disclosure of vital information;
    Well-trained, competent staff and prudent management of resources;
    Innovative and supportive housing options;
    Maximizing independence, autonomy and dignity;
    Partnership and collaboration with the community; and
    Good citizenship and mutually beneficial activities.


On-Site Housing Manager                                                                  Formatted: Font: Italic
Each organization uses different job titles; for the purposes of this application, the
On-Site Housing Manager is defined as the person responsible for the day-to-day
operations of the housing or assisted living site being considered in the application.
In order to meet this requirement, you must show that your on-site housing manager
has at least one year of experience in the field of older adult housing services.

We realize that providers may experience some staff turnover, and assume that
organizations that have previously received the Confident Choices designation have
good systems in place that will continue during such transitions. Therefore, if a
renewing provider’s housing manager has less than a year of senior housing
experience, the manager must attach a description of:
      a. An educational plan outlining how the manager intends to obtain the
          training needed as a housing manager
      b. The person’s other experience relevant to the housing management job
          (e.g., business experience, HR, etc.)
      c. Identification of a knowledgeable supervisor, mentor or experienced
          housing manager who is available to provide guidance and assistance.

The successful application will also show a commitment to ongoing training and
development in the field of older adult services, such as participation in the Aging
Services Certificate Programs, Aging Services of Minnesota Institute, regular
conferences, degree programs, etc. Alternatives to Aging Services programs and
offerings will be acceptable.
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Resident (or Family/Responsible Party) Satisfaction Survey
In order to meet this requirement, you must be currently (within the last year)
administering a resident satisfaction survey. We will not be evaluating your response
rate, but would like you to indicate the rate of responses to your satisfaction survey
along with a statement describing how you share the results of your satisfaction
surveys with residents. Please also explain how you follow up on issues identified in
the resident satisfaction survey and indicate whether you have made any changes in
your programs or policies as a result of the survey feedback.

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Through the application or site visit process, you may be asked to show the survey
and results. During the on-site visit, reviewers will be looking for “best practices” that
can be shared with others, such as a successful change you made as a result of
feedback from your satisfaction survey.

Resident Handbook                                                                            Formatted: Font: Italic
In order to meet this requirement, you must have a current resident handbook that
you distribute to your residents. Please attach a copy of the front cover and table of
contents of your resident handbook to this application. Please describe your process
for reviewing and updating your resident handbook to keep it consistent with your
policies and practices.

Through the application or site visit process, you may be asked to show the
handbook and if you’d be willing to share it or some of its contents with other
providers as a best practice.

Dementia/Memory Care Standards
You only need to complete this section if you market your building as
providing dementia or memory care services. In order to meet this requirement,
you must be currently following recognized Dementia/Memory Care standards. The
easiest way to comply is to adopt and follow the Aging Services of Minnesota Guiding
Principles for Dementia Care, although other alternatives will be considered. If you
follow alternative dementia care standards, please identify them.

Important: If your application does not address all of these sections (five if you have
dementia/memory care, four if you do not), it will not be considered. You will be
notified if this is the case and given an opportunity to complete all sections.


ELECTIVE REQUIREMENTS
You are required to meet at least five of the fourteen options for elective
requirements, and we encourage you to select more than five electives, if possible, to
provide extra “insurance” of having a successful application. The electives have been
chosen so that all providers - small or large, HWS with AL program or Housing-with-
Services with no assisted living program, rural or metro, stand-alone or multi-facility -
all have the opportunity to participate.

Although you only need to address five of the fourteen options for elective
requirements, feel free to address more than five to provide extra insurance. For
renewing designees, we will expect you to address all areas identified in your
previous application unless you provide an explanation why a particular program or
initiative has been discontinued.

Select the electives you want to address and then complete those corresponding
sections. YOU DO NOT NEED TO COMPLETE ALL SECTIONS IN THE ELECTIVE

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PART OF THE APPLICATION. Through the application or site visit process, you may
be asked to show your systems/programs and results and if you’d be willing to share
with other providers in the name of spreading best practices.

Staff Satisfaction Surveys
In order to meet this requirement, you must be currently (within the last year)
administering a staff satisfaction survey. If you have contract services in your
building, such as home care or food service, you are not required to make sure that
those employers administer a satisfaction survey.

If you select this elective, please describe 1) how you communicate the results of the
staff satisfaction survey to staff, 2) how you follow up on any issues raised in the
surveys and 3) any changes you’ve made as a result. And if your staff survey has
resulted in an improvement that you’d like to share with others as a best practice,
please tell the on-site reviewer.

Staff Education and Training Programs
In order to meet this requirement, you need to demonstrate that you offer or make
available ongoing education and training opportunities for your staff. You are not
required to provide all of the education and training programs yourself, only that the
opportunities are available to your staff. You must also have offerings that are
beyond the mandatory in-services such as OSHA, Fire Safety, Vulnerable Adult, etc.
Please highlight any changes you’ve made in your staff education and training
programs in the previous two years.

Participation in My InnerView Quality Profile
Assisted Living only: In order to meet this requirement, you must be currently
participating in the My InnerView Quality Profile and show evidence of using the
information or process to improve your care and services. Examples may include
monitoring the information and improving one of the clinical standards (falls, weight
change, etc.) or one of the employee standards (turnover or absenteeism). Note that
if you choose this elective and one of the other performance improvement plans
below, each of these electives must address a different clinical issue or service.

Performance Improvement Plans - Clinical
In order to meet this requirement, you must show evidence of regularly monitoring
your resident clinical outcomes such as skin condition, falls, hospitalizations, etc.,
and implementing process improvements to enhance those outcomes. Some of these
projects may take a while to show improvement; the successful application will show
current efforts on these projects within the last 12 months. Note that if you also select
participation in My InnerView quality profile as one of your electives, then each of
these electives must address different clinical issues, services or programs. In
addressing this elective, you are asked to:
     Give some examples of benchmarking projects within the past year;
     Identify any new process or systems you have implemented in the past two
        years as a result of your benchmarking; and

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      Describe the outcomes/results of these new processes or systems.

Performance Improvement Plans – Non Clinical
In order to meet this requirement, you must show evidence of regularly monitoring
some aspect of your non-clinical program or resident services, such as use of
transportation systems, attendance in activities, length of stay, etc., and
implementing process improvements to enhance those outcomes. Some of these
projects may take a while to show improvement; the successful application will show
current efforts on these projects within the last 12 months.

Corporate Compliance Program
In order to meet this requirement, you must describe a corporate compliance
program as outlined in federal guidelines (for more information, refer to
http://oig.hhs.gov/fraud/complianceguidance.html). Typically these programs have
frequent communication with employees, residents, families and vendors about your
commitment to ethical and fair business practices, including a commitment to not
commit fraud and abuse in the areas of contracting and billing for services.
Employees, residents, families, and vendors are invited to raise issues of concern,
often through a designated phone number and staff member who follows through on
issues that have been raised.

Social Accountability Programs
In order to meet this requirement, you must show that you are currently
demonstrating good faith efforts to be a “good neighbor” to the whole community.
Typically these efforts take your staff or residents outside of the building to benefit the
broader community. Examples include: Adopt-A-Highway; participation in programs
such as Feed My Starving Children or Operation Christmas Child; regular
participation in local Rotary, Lions, Chamber of Commerce or other civic
organizations, intergenerational or school partnerships; or financial programs that
benefit specific residents who may run short of funds. If possible, provide examples
that involve residents as well as staff.

Resident Education and Training Programs
For this elective, you are not required to provide all of the education and training
programs yourself, only to make sure that you are making opportunities available to
your residents. In addition to the programs you provide for your residents, examples
may include: posting calendars of local community center offerings, or scheduling
transportation to bring residents to external offerings.

Resident/Family Meetings, Councils or Conferences
In order to meet this requirement, you must describe how you are offering regular
resident/family meetings, councils or care conferences to address resident input and
concerns about the management of the building and/or specific programs such as
dining, home care, or activities.




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Referrals to Other Programs or Services
It is not expected that each provider offer every service that your residents might
want or need. Quality providers will have a system in place for referring residents to
other providers or agencies who may offer services that the provider does not. In
order to meet this requirement, you must describe which services you routinely refer
out and how those options are made available to the residents (e.g., who on staff
makes referrals and/or how you distribute information about other available services.)

Opportunities for Resident Socialization and Recreation
In order to meet this requirement, you must describe the kinds of activities or
opportunities for socialization that you make available to your residents. We will be
looking for an appropriate number and type of activities given your residents and
operation.

Fitness/“Wellness” Programs
In order to meet this requirement, you must describe active steps you are taking to
encourage resident wellness. It is not enough to have a walking path around your
building or even an exercise room. There must be some evidence of staff, residents,
or volunteers taking an active role to promote good lifestyle choices in all areas of
wellness. Wellness activities include nutrition (e.g., healthy meal options, nutritional
education, etc.), physical wellness, mental and spiritual wellness. While no one can
make the residents participate in exercise or healthy eating options, the high quality
provider “will actively promote” such programs.

Communication System or Newsletters
In order to meet this requirement, you must describe how you regularly communicate
with your residents. The most common form of communication is a resident
newsletter, but well-used bulletin boards, closed-circuit TV systems, and well-
attended resident meetings may all be examples of good communication systems.

Resident-Centered Technology
If you choose to respond to this elective, you should describe some of the technology
systems you are using directly with your residents or to benefit their care and
services. Some examples may be: resident computers with Internet hook-up, high-
tech call systems, resident monitoring systems such as Quiet Care, or
physical/cognitive fitness programs for residents.

Important: If your application does not address at least five of these electives, it will
not be considered for designation renewal. You will be notified if this is the case and
given an opportunity to complete at least five sections.

If you have any questions regarding this application or the Confident Choices
process, contact Mary Youle at Aging Services of Minnesota, 651-645-4545 or
myoule@agingservicesmn.org.



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Thank you for considering Confident Choices!




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